It's not what you think
Adam Perry Lang's Rack of Pork Brined with Crab Boil Spices
- 1 6- bone rack of pork, bones not frenched (about 4 pounds)
- For the Crab Boil Brine:
- 2 cups apple cider
- 2 cups water
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed
- 1/4 cup kosher salt
- 1 sachet of crab boil spices* (preferably Zatarain's)
- 8 garlic cloves, unpeeled and crushed
- For the Seasoning Blend:
- 2 tablespoons mild chile powder (preferably Chimayo, Ancho, or Hatch)
- 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
- 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar, firmly packed
- 3/4 teaspoon dry mustard
- 3/4 teaspoon pimentón (or other smoked paprika)
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh black pepper, coarsely ground
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
- For the Red Pepper Glaze:
- 1/2 cup red pepper jelly (preferably spicy)
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- For the Finishing Dressing:
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 lemon, seeds removed
- 1/4 cup chives, finely chopped
- Fleur de sel (or sea salt)
- Fresh black pepper, finely ground, to taste
- *Sachets of crab boil spices are available in most supermarkets. If you can't find them or you prefer to use Old Bay Seasoning, make a sachet by placing 1/3 cup of Old Bay in a double layer of cheesecloth, bundle, and tie the top with kitchen twine.
- Combine all of the brine ingredients in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, remove from the heat, cool, and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or up to 12.
- Separate the bones of the rack by cutting between each of the bones, starting at the top between two bones, cutting through, and stopping about 1/4 to 1/2 inch above the meat of the chop.
- Place the rack in an extra-large resealable plastic bag. Pour the brine over the rack, squeeze out any excess air from the bag, and close. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours, or up to 12.
- Preheat an indirect barbecue with a drip pan and fruitwood (preferably apple), a ceramic cooker with deflector plate and fruitwood (preferably apple), or a charcoal or gas grill with a box or packet of fruitwood (preferably apple) to 250°F.
- Combine all of the seasoning blend ingredients.
- Remove the pork from the brine and lightly pat dry with paper towels. Sprinkle with the seasoning blend ingredients on all sides.
- Place the pork in the cooker, and cook until the internal temperature reaches 135°F, about 1 and 1/2 hours.
- Meanwhile, put the glaze ingredients in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake to combine. If the jelly is especially thick, the mixture may need to be warmed in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring to combine as the jelly melts.
- Remove the meat from the cooker and brush on all sides with the glaze.
- Place back in the cooker and continue to cook until the internal temperature reaches 145°F, about 15 minutes. At this point the meat will be slightly pink in the center; cook for an additional 5 to 10 minutes for more well-done.
- Drizzle the olive oil on a cutting board. Squeeze the lemon over the top, followed by the chives. Sprinkle fleur de sel and pepper on the board.
- Remove the meat from the cooker and transfer to the cutting board. Let rest for 10 minutes. Slice into individual chops and dredge the exposed cut sides in the mixture. Season again with fleur de sel and pepper.